Tanner Cassidy is currently working on his Master’s and PhD in Music Theory at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Tanner completed his Bachelor’s in Music at North Central College in Naperville, Illinois. While at North Central, he completed an honors thesis that applied a Neo-Riemannian perspective to the improvisations of Art Tatum, and also presented twice at the National Conference for Undergraduate Research.
Tanner’s research interests include the study of harmony within jazz and Romantic music, particularly through the lens of Neo-Riemannian theory. Past projects have investigated the music of Duke Ellington and Richard Wagner. In addition, he is also interested in film and video game music, with past and current projects looking at topic theory in Japanese kaiju eiga as well as looking at the orchestrational decisions that arise from technical constraints of early video game composition.
As a performer, Tanner is a saxophonist and conductor, occupying his time on campus performing with jazz groups and conducting the UCSB Pops Orchestra. A composer as well, Tanner’s compositions have recently been performed by students at the University of Memphis and by the Chicago-based ensemble Picosa.